News of the WeekWEST NILE VIRUS

Blood Banks in a 'Race Against the Mosquitoes'

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Science  21 Mar 2003:
Vol. 299, Issue 5614, pp. 1824
DOI: 10.1126/science.299.5614.1824

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Public health agencies and companies are racing against the clock to protect the North American blood supply from West Nile virus, which is expected to reappear soon after a winter hiatus. The mosquito-borne disease is dormant in cold months, but a score of infections linked to blood transfusions last fall prompted a rush effort to design a rapid and sensitive blood test.